Sunday, March 25, 2012

Finding time to cook

Dempsey is finally getting on a schedule, so I am hoping to find some time to cook.  Here's the schedule I am using for him that we also used for Tessa.
6 a.m.:  Wake him up and feed 5 oz. bottle
6-8:  Keep him up by playing, talking to him, tummy time
8-10:  nap
10:  wake him up and feed 5 oz. bottle
10-12:  Keep him up by playing, talking to him, tummy time
12-2:  nap
2-4:  Keep him up by playing, talking to him, tummy time
4-6:  nap
6-8:  Keep him up by playing, talking to him, tummy time, bathtime, books, prayers, bedtime at 8
8-10:  bed to sleep
10:  wake him up to give him one last bottle to help get thru the night
He will usually sleep until about 2 or 3 and we'll get up to give him another 5 oz. bottle. 

So, you can see he eats every 4 hours and takes three 2 hour naps during the day.  We are working towards this schedule and he's doing pretty well.  We're trying to get him used to soothing himself as best he can and not putting him to sleep by holding him.  This is easier said than done!  But, we're getting there!

I'm hoping to use his 4-6 nap to get dinner ready.  I will be trying to make the following meals:  Oriental Chicken, Super Sloppy Joes, Sesame Orange Pork Chops, and Chicken Sausage Quesadillas.

Oriental Chicken:  This recipe is adapted from Once a Month Cooking.
2 tbsp sweet butter
2 tbsp all purpose flour
1 cup chicken broth
1 cup water
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp crushed garlic
1 cup cooked, diced chicken
1 tsp pepper
1 5-ounce can chow mein noodles

Melt butter in a medium saucepain over low heat.  Add flour and stir over medium heat until bubbly.  Add broth, water, soy sauce, garlic powder, chicken, and pepper; simmer for 5 minutes.  Serve over chow mein noodles.

I would also like to serve egg rolls with this dinner.  Maybe I'll find some that are already made to serve alongside.

Super Sloppy Joes With Deviled Potato Salad:  Courtesy of Rachel Ray (Don't use that canned stuff!  Make your own sloppy joes!)


  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 turn of the pan
  • 1 1/4 pounds ground beef sirloin
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons to 1 tablespoon steak seasoning blend, such as McCormick brand Montreal Seasoning
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 small red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 crusty rolls, split, toasted, and lightly buttered
  • Garnish: sliced ripe tomatoes, pickles, Deviled Potato Salad, recipe follows


Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add oil and meat to the pan. Spread the meat around the pan and begin to break it up. Combine brown sugar and steak seasoning. Add sugar and spice mixture to the skillet and combine. When the meat has browned, add onion and red peppers to the skillet. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, peppers, red wine vinegar and Worcestershire sauce with meat for 5 minutes. Add tomato sauce and paste to pan. Stir to combine. Reduce heat to simmer and cook Sloppy Joe mixture 5 minutes longer. Using a large spoon or ice cream scoop, pile sloppy meat onto toasted, buttered bun bottoms and cover with bun tops. Serve with your favorite sides or sliced tomatoes seasoned with salt and pepper, dill pickles and Deviled Potato Salad. Have plenty of napkins on hand!

Deviled Potato Salad:

5 all-purpose potatoes, peeled and diced
Coarse salt
1/4 onion
3 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
1/2 cup mayonnaise, eyeball the amount
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon hot cayenne pepper sauce (recommended: Tabasco or Frank's Red Hot)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 scallions, thinly sliced, for garnish
Boil potatoes in water seasoned with coarse salt until they are tender, about 10 minutes. Drain cooked potatoes and return to the warm pot to dry them out. Let the potatoes stand 2 minutes, then spread potatoes out on to a cookie sheet to quick-cool them.
In the bottom of a medium mixing bowl, grate 1/4 onion using a hand grater. Add mustard and mayonnaise, paprika and cayenne pepper sauce to the grated onion and stir to combine. Add potatoes to the bowl and stir to evenly distribute dressing. Season potato salad with salt and pepper and taste to adjust your seasonings. Top servings of salad with chopped scallions.

Sesame Orange Pork Chops:  My awesome cousin, Heather Dixon, uses the site, Moms Who Think, to get a lot of crock pot recipes.  I checked the site out and loved it!  Here's a crock pot recipe to try.

3 pounds pork chops
2 cups orange juice
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
2 cans mandarin oranges drained, (11 ounces each)
1 can pineapple tidbits drained, (8 ounces)
1 Tablespoon sesame seeds

1. Place pork chops into the crock pot.  In a small bowl, mix the brown sugar with the orange juice until well combined. Pour orange juice mixture evenly over chops.
2. Cook on  low 6 to 8 hours.
3. About 30 minutes before serving add the oranges and pineapple, warm for  20 minutes.
4. Sprinkle sesame seeds evenly over each pork chop.  Serve with rice or broccoli.

Chicken Sausage Quesadillas:  Chicken Sausage is on sale this week at our grocery store and I have a coupon!  This should be an easy weeknight meal.

12 8 inch flour tortillas
1 pkg. Johnsonville Chipotle Monterey Jack Cheese Chicken Sausage, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
3 cups colby jack cheese, shredded

Place 3 tortillas on a large greased baking sheet.  Sprinkle each with sausage, red pepper, green onion and cheese.  Top each with a tortilla.  Place baking sheet on center rack in oven.  Broil for 2 minutes on each side or until golden brown.  Cut into wedges.  Repeat with remaining ingredients.  Serve with salsa.

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